Not currently offered

Course handbook


Introduces students to philosophy through the study of two central areas of philosophical interest: study of knowledge and the meaning of life. A basic level of knowledge of core philosophical concepts and skills is provided along with development of a wider set of necessary skills for university study, including academic reading, writing and research skills. Exploration of individual beliefs and mutual respect for the diversity of viewpoints across individuals and cultures is encouraged through discussion.


Not currently offered.

This Course was last offered in Semester 1 - 2016.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate a basic familiarity with the fundamental issues, concepts and arguments in epistemology and metaphysics;

2. Demonstrate an awareness of the difference between mere opinion and reasoned belief and a recognition of, and respect for, competing points of view;

3. Demonstrate a basic competence in the reading of academic texts and a capacity to integrate reading of texts with material presented in lectures;

4. Demonstrate a basic competence in critical thinking and essay writing skills, including the use of argument, organisation of ideas and the use and acknowledgement of primary and secondary literature sources;

5. Demonstrate a basic competence in research skills, including the use of libraries.


The course covers:

Epistemology: our knowledge of the external world.

  1. What is knowledge?
  2. The fallibility of perceptions.
  3. Do we have knowledge of the external world?
  4. Scepticism.
  5. Avoiding scepticism: An alternative view of knowledge.

Metaphysics and the meaning of life:

  1. The nature and purpose of metaphysics.
  2. The mind/body problem.
  3. Various topics in metaphysics, such as: the existence of God; free will; philosophy in popular culture.


This course is only available to students who are active in the Open Foundation Program or the Yapug Program.

Assessment items

Essay: Minor Essay - Epistomology

Essay: Major Essay - Epistomology

In Term Test: Class Test - Epistomology and Metaphysics

Essay: Major Essay - Metaphysics

Formal Examination: Final Examination